How To Avoid A Business Divorce

My new client’s consultancy business was on the brink of collapse. It had happy customers, a full order book, and reasonable cashflow… but the two partners at the centre of the company were at daggers drawn. They were bickering constantly. Every email exchange ended in an argument. Contractors felt under pressure to take sides. Worst of all, the…

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Is Teamwork History?

The current back-to-the-Seventies craze is reviving some less-than-happy memories. Certain fashions – sickly Angel Delight, finger-bruising clackers, and lurid, sweaty, itchy Crimplene, for example – should be left in the dustbin of history. It’s just obvious. But could the idea of “teamwork” in business be going the same way? I’m increasingly convinced that’s possible. I’ve now interviewed 12 people for…

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Metaphors And Collaboration? What’s The Link?

My newly-launched Collaboration Dynamics podcast has a slightly unusual format. Each week, I interview someone who’s been involved in collaboration. So far, so standard. But here’s the surprising bit – I invite them to talk about their metaphor for collaboration. What emerges is a vivid description of their unique way of doing what they do. And…

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Leading Creative Collaboration: Three Key Skills (And Where I Fail)

What are the three key skills that enable groups to collaborate? What capabilities make it possible for “collective genius” to emerge from a successful innovation process? According to Prof Linda Hill of Harvard University, the key skills are: Inquiry Listening Advocacy. In her TED talk (below) she says: “Individuals in innovative organizations learn how to…

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Why Effective Collaboration Takes Longer Than You Think

I’m excited to announce that today, my shiny new Collaboration Dynamics podcast went live on iTunes. Check it out – if you’re curious about how people really think about working with other people, you’ll find it interesting. I hoped it would launch on Friday – and it’s now Wednesday. Hosftadter’s Law strikes again. “Everything takes longer than you…

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